My Training (Observation) Schedule for 2018

The chapter on the private citizen gun training industry is just one of five or six planned chapters of my book on Gun Culture 2.0, but it is has been the most interesting to research and write. Although I have attended quite a few gun training events over the years, including the foundational MAG-40 class back in 2012 and Rangemaster Tactical Conference in 2014, I committed myself to more extensive observation in 2017.

(See my posts from this year on the Rangemaster Instructor Development Course, Gunsite 250 Defensive Pistol, Combat Focus Shooting Instructor Conference, Travis Haley of Haley Strategic Partners, Suarez International [more forthcoming on SI Pistol Gunfighting School], and planned post[s] on John Correia of Active Self-Protection.)

With John Murphy of FPF Training, Culpeper, VA, May 2017. Photo by Lynn Givens

Although I am supposed to be winding down my observations of training to work on the other chapters of my book, it’s hard to pull myself away, especially when I see alot of people posting their training schedules — both as trainers and as end-users — for 2018. So, following suit, here are the events I am planning to observe in 2018, along with trainers that are on my “wish list” — most of whom I will not be able to observe given resource limitations.

1. Massad Ayoob Group and Firearms Academy of Seattle, “Deadly Force Instructor,” 31 January to 4 February 2018, hosted by Karl Rehn of KR Training, Manheim, Texas.

2. Rangemaster Tactical Conference, 16 to 18 March 2018, Direct Action Resource Center, Little Rock, Arkansas.

3. Active Self Protection featuring John Correia, “Survive the Fight” seminar, 22-23 June 2018, hosted by Lander Defense, Casper Wyoming.

4. Costa Ludus, “Handgun Elements Theory 1 (HET1), 29 June to 1 July 2018, Thayne, Wyoming.

5. KR Training, “Historical Handguns” (2 day), 20-21 October 2018, Culpeper, Virginia

6. Haley Strategic Partners, D5 Handgun, 9 to 11 November 2018, Autreyville, North Carolina.

At the risk of offending someone whose name is slipping my mind right now, on my “wish list” are the following other trainers (not an exhaustive list and to be updated as I go along):

  • William Aprill, Aprill Risk Consulting
  • Paul Carlson, Safety Solutions Academy
  • Caleb Causey, Lone Star Medics
  • Grant Cunningham, Personal Security Institute
  • Craig Douglas, Shivworks
  • Greg Ellifritz, Active Response Training
  • John Farnam, DTI
  • Jeff Gonzalez, Trident Concepts
  • Mike Green, Green Ops
  • Steve Hendricks, Custom Tactical Services
  • Brian Hill, The Complete Combatant
  • Ernest Langdon, Langdon Tactical
  • Melody Lauer and John Johnston, Citizens Defense Research
  • Pat McNamara, TMACS, The Sentinel
  • John Murphy, FPF
  • Mike Pannone, CTT Solutions
  • Bill Regina, Specialist Research and Training Group
  • Bill Rogers, Rogers Shooting School
  • Clint Smith, Thunder Ranch
  • Dave Spaulding, Handgun Combatives
  • Claude Werner, The Tactical Profesor
  • Gabe White, Pistol Shooting Solutions



  1. You’ve already surpassed most in your commitment to learn.
    Most put their money where their gun is ($2K Glocks) and their time into endless forum-posturing and Instagram peacocking.
    Software > Hardware…you get it more than the never-a-commando commandos, sir.


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